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1993 Carneros Pinot Noir

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About the Vineyard...
The 1993 Ancien Pinot noir comes from 21 year old vines in the Carneros region of the Napa Valley. The vineyard is located on a north-eastern slope in thin clay/loam soil with excellent drainage. The combination of vine age and the north eastern slope (sheltering the vines from the brisk Carneros winds) makes this a unique site. The fruit expresses itself with earthy, mushroom, and sometimes meaty aromas underneath the more typical "Carneros cherry fruit" along with anise, spice, and blackberry. It is the complexity of this fruit that we found appealing in our selection of this site.

About the Vintage...
The 1993 vintage was characterized by even fruit set, moderate crop levels, and warmer than average temperatures in August. The warmth produced richly textured wines with ripe tannins and moderate acidity levels. Overall, look for the wines to be lush, nicely concentrated, and approachable at release or after short term aging.

About the Wine...
The grapes were 100% destemmed into an open top fermenter and punched down 3 times per day at the beginning of fermentation. This was decreased to 2 times per day by the end of fermentation. A small innoculum of "Assmannshausen" cultured yeast made for a very slow start to fermentation, allowing for extraction of flavor and color. Still, once the fermentation started, it peaked early in the fermentation( at 92F) allowing for full extraction of the grapes. The wine was gently pressed four days after dryness by hand in a basket press and went directly to barrel. The wine was then aged in Francois Freres and Billon barrels and was racked once in the Spring. The wine was bottled in September, 1994. The 1993 vintage produced wines with impressive intensity and a fair bit of tannin and structure. The fruit intensity makes them attractive to drink now with the structure to continue develop.

Tasting Notes...
Lush blackberry and black cherry flavors with anise and spice layered over plum, dark chocolate, and coffee flavors. The palate reverberates with lingering blackberry fruit, mint, and spice. The wine is generously textured with a long finish. Drink or hold 3 - 6 years.